heffield manufacturer, Mechan, has side stepped its way into the transport industry’s record books, after installing the largest capacity rail traverser in the UK.
The heavy lifting specialist has designed and built the traverser to move freight locomotives between lines at the Port of Felixstowe’s new North Rail Terminal.
With a capacity of 170 tonnes, the structure is one of a kind in the UK and the most advanced traverser ever produced by Mechan. Weighing 90 tonnes and measuring 30 metres in length, the behemoth is equipped specifically to handle future locomotives, which are expected to be larger than today’s trains.
Mechan was asked to undertake the project by main contractor, Volker Fitzpatrick, who is handling all civil works at the new terminal, including installation of the pit and track for the traverser. It has taken almost 12 months to design and build in Sheffield and was delivered complete to site by Leicester Heavy Haulage.
Martin Berry, Mechan’s engineering director, said: “Installation of this traverser was a real landmark occasion for us. It has been such a huge undertaking, not only because of its size, but also in terms of the technological developments within its design. We were very pleased to secure the contract with Felixstowe in the face of stiff competition from a Dutch supplier and look forward to seeing the new terminal in operation very soon.”
The €37 million North Rail Terminal is set to boost capability at the Port of Felixstowe by 100%, reinforcing its position as the busiest intermodal rail hub in the UK. The project has included the installation of 10 kilometres of new track, terminating at the Mechan traverser, increasing the external rail network’s capacity by 25%. [More]